[ubuntu-art] next meeting

Travis Watkins amaranth at ubuntu.com
Fri Feb 8 11:46:23 GMT 2008

On Feb 8, 2008 5:01 AM, Andrew Laignel <a.laignel at ukdotcafe.com> wrote:
> Here's an idea, and something I have been wanting for a long time...
> Get rid of the 'Desktop' as a file store - remove it from the directory
> hierarchy!
> The only reason to store something on the desktop is if you can't be
> bothered to put it where it's meant to go.  Ideally everything should be
> in the home folder, rather than split across a locations.  Everything
> else - shortcuts, pseudo-icons could remain but only if handled by the
> system in an organised fashion ala Mac OS (drives and folders down RHS).
> The mixing of shortcuts, files, and system icons is generally a bad idea
> as you don't know whats what largely.  Generally most desktops are just
> an ugly mess.
> If you remove the desktop-as-a-junkstore paradigm that everyone always
> does because everyone's always done it it opens up many new
> opportunities for using the desktop as an actual interface rather than
> the reliance on toolbars.  It would also make a more intuitive system as
> you have more space to work with (as it will hide behind windows) so you
> are not constrained to 32px height restrictions.

Actually, the desktop effectively does not exist exactly because it is
covered almost all the time. This is probably why people don't worry
about using it as a junk store, they never see it unless they're
diving in there to get something anyway. Kind of like the junk drawer
on your real desk. :)

> You could have multiple icons for various things that would expand out
> when hovered or clicked such as home folder, drives, places, software
> etc.  You could shade all the controls or slide them out of the way when
> the desktop has no focus to prevent accidental clicks, and maybe slide
> the home folder out if someone does try to drag something to the desktop
> to make it obvious that's not where it goes.
> I've done a quick mockup of what I think would improve on the GUI.
> Obviously it's not perfect but there may be some good ideas there.  With
> all the effort being spent on all the other areas of Ubuntu, more should
> be spent on the interface.
> --
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Travis Watkins

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